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Member since: Tue Sep 4, 2007, 06:36 AM
Number of posts: 7,804

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Here is the perspective of a Muslim woman on New Year's Eve in Cologne...

This is a short article, but very much to the point and I hope that this will at least make some inroads into reassuring some at DU that there are perspectives on the potentially troubling effects of mass immigration that don't necessarily come from frothing UK tabloid red-top types (of which, apparently, I am one. News to me, my dears).


Those who know this problem best are the women who question and criticize the role they are given in Muslim society. Women for whom the Cologne attacks are nothing new. They know such behavior from Taksim Square in Istanbul and Tahrir Square in Cairo. Women who refuse to remain silent about gender relations in their societies.

To clarify: Every person has the right to live in peace. This is not about immigration from Islamic countries per se. People that are fleeing war zones naturally deserve our help and solidarity - especially families, and mothers with children. These children have done nothing wrong, and it is our moral obligation to help them.

Nevertheless, immigration obviously brings problems - problems that we cannot ignore. And as this influx of people from so great a distance provides no historical comparisons, there is no one that we can ask about possible risks and side effects. We have to be careful not to paint the world as black or white. No, the world that we live in is complex, and every person is individually different.

Two German feminists debate Cologne in Der Spiegel


Schwarzer: The debate over sexual violence has re-emerged as a result of that night in Cologne. Even Germany's justice minister, who for years allowed necessary reforms to tighten Germany's rape laws torot in a drawer, has pulled them out again. But when you only speak using generalizations, you run the danger of denying the specific. In recent decades, millions of people have come to us from cultural groups within which women have absolutely no rights. They do not have a voice of their own and they are totally dependent on their fathers, brothers or husbands. That applies to North Africa and that applies to large parts of the Middle East. It isn't always linked to Islam. But since the end of the 1970s, at the beginning of the revolution in Iran under Khomenei, we have experienced a politicization of Islam. From the beginning, it had a primary adversary: the emancipation of women. With more men now coming to us from this cultural sphere, and some additionally brutalized by civil wars, this is a problem. We cannot simply ignore it.

Wizorek: But it is also wrong to look only at the origin of the perpetrators. When I see the kinds of people that are now jumping into the debate over women's rights, it also includes, among others, the same politicians who, during the #aufschrei debate in 2013, said that women shouldn't be so demanding. Now that men with immigration backgrounds have committed sexual assaults, it is being instrumentalized in order to stigmatize them as a group. I think that is racist.

Worth reading, I'd suggest. Adds quite a bit of perspective.

Europe - migrants - Cologne attacks - The comments section on this Guardian article...

I think some people posting here might get a better idea of what's going on in Europe with the migrant situation if they read this article, which is about Cologne, and then the comments section on this article, (and not the "Guardian picks", which are laughably slanted towards Hinsliffe's position). It would also give some of you an idea of how the left in the UK currently views the Guardian, which is to say - not with fondness.


A lot of people are extremely angry.

I suggest reading the entire comment thread. I have been posting to the Guardian comments section for some years now and I have never seen an author so roundly lambasted there, the audience completely obliterates Hinsliffe, and given the tone of her article, I'm not at all surprised. There are 6,000 comments and some of the recommendation totals are in the thousands. It's unprecedented in my experience.

It is often better to hear the voice of the people rather than the voice of the journalist or politician. It will rapidly become clear to anyone reading the comment section on the article I've linked to that the current stance of tolerance for uncontrolled immigration is not going to last much longer.

And this is in the UK. I can't imagine how Germany is reacting. Not well, I suspect.

You guys do realise that not all the Cologne attackers were refugees? Or from Syria?

Stories suggest that many of the attackers are from Tunisia or Morocco. Some numbers of these men appear not to be refugees at all but rather economic migrants.


And here:


But if asylum seekers have no nationality or passport, how can you deport them?

The question is where the person comes from, and what agreements we have with the country the person comes from. For instance, with North African countries like Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco we do have agreements. And most of the accused have come from these countries.

Repeatedly in European media the attackers have been described as "North African", not "Syrian".
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